I’ve worked in care homes since I was a teenager, and I’ve worked my way up the ladder. Before joining Scarlet House, I was the home manager of a nursing and dementia care home in Cheltenham.
My style is to be visible and social out in the home, getting to know residents and colleagues. I’m looking forward to working with the lifestyle team and the home team as a whole to involve residents in all aspects of home life. Scarlet House is our residents’ home and it’s important that they are involved in the running of the home. I’m planning more resident meetings, and hopefully to appoint some resident ambassadors.
I’m a big believer in family and community (I’m from a military family – my dad was in the Army and my brother’s a Royal Marine) and I have two sons who I’m looking forward to bringing in to meet the residents. I like being busy... As well as managing Scarlet House and caring for my two children, my partner and I are renovating our house in Slimbridge. We also have two dogs, as well as chickens, ducks and a smallholding with sheep!
Before joining Scarlet House in 2018 I spent 26 years working with older people in the local area running the council’s Community Alarm Service. However, my father had been a resident at Scarlet House, so, when I was made redundant, the manager suggested I apply to work here. I had a good feel for the home and the residents and I knew a number of the home team already.
Lunchtime is the best part of the day, with everyone buzzing and eager to get involved in activities. I myself really enjoy visiting historic houses, castles and gardens, so I’m looking forward to doing as many outings as we can around our lovely area. I thrive on the interaction with the residents – learning more about them and finding ways to bring them meaningful experiences.
Becoming the head chef at Scarlet House has definitely been the highlight of my career to date. I enjoy talking to the residents, learning more about them and what they like, and getting their feedback about the menus we serve them.
When you’re a head chef you need to be able to listen and communicate well with other teams. Having good ideas and being able to plan effectively are also key skills that come in handy.
We produce up to 86 meals for each meal time, so there’s some pressure involved! I haven’t been at Scarlet House that long (since late 2018), so I’m slowly putting my mark on things. I’m starting to make little changes to the way we work in the kitchen so that everything can run as smoothly as possible.
My background is in hospitality and retail management – I’ve worked everywhere from hotels and restaurants to castles and events venues. In these sectors, the focus on the customer experience is all-important, and I’ve been delighted to discover that the same is true at Care UK. It’s all about delivering superb customer care and service.
What I like about the organisation is that it cares about its colleagues too. I’d heard great things about Care UK as a great place to work, including its training and development opportunities.
Without a doubt, the best part of my day is chatting to the residents. It’s fantastic to learn about what they’ve experienced, and what they still want to achieve. I’m also enjoying developing the strong links that the home already has with the local community. I’m looking forward to supporting the Scarlet House team on its journey from ‘good to great’.